Lentils (French) Sprouts

French Lentils take 4+ days to reach (what I consider) optimal eating size. After my first experience with lentils, I would have to rank them as pretty easy to sprout. A little slower than my friends the mung beans. But their more delicate flavor more than makes up for it.

In my limited experience, they do not present any special problems.  For me if the sprout is too much of a pain in da rear to work with I just don’t work with it. There are plenty of good beans, seeds, and grains that are simple enough to sprout.

Begin soaking lentils

Begin soaking lentils

As usual, I put some of whatever I am sprouting into a clean jar and add water to soak. I like to rinse the new beans three times to remove any dust or other pollutants that will rinse away. For me overnight soaking is the best. I will start the soak in the early evening than leave until the next morning. Part of the reason for this is that I won’t be tempted to mess with the soaking beans when I’m in bed.

Lentils the next morning (12 hours)

Lentils the next morning (12 hours)

As you can see in the image (above) color has soaked from the hulls into the water.  If you happen to have any specific information about the components that have been absorbed into the water, give a holler in the discussion box below. Would be interesting to know.

Lentils the next morning (12 hours) Close-up

Lentils the next morning (12 hours) Close-up

Here is a close-up indicating that small, but not all, hulls have started to split. This is our first hint that lentils will take a bit longer than mung beans.

French Lentils (36 hours)

French Lentils (36 hours)

At 36 hours we start seeing some serious beginnings of sprouts peeking out.

French Lentils (36 hours) Close-up

French Lentils (36 hours) Close-up

In the above close-up you can see almost all the lentils have a little sprout started.

French Lentils (48 hours)

French Lentils (48 hours)

The sprouts are a bit more active at this point. Definitely a slower grow than mung beans.

French Lentils (48 hours) Close-up

French Lentils (48 hours) Close-up

Quite tender, with good germination. Looks to be about 95% or better.

French Lentils (72 hours)

French Lentils (72 hours)

Three days later the French Lentils are really getting their growth on. From the looks of it, I do believe I shall harvest these little guys at 4 days (96 hours).

French Lentil (72 hours) Close-up

French Lentil (72 hours) Close-up

I really like the looks of the lentil sprouts. They have a very delicate look and texture. I’ve tasted them at this stage and find them quite edible — but, sill prefer them at 4 days.

Lentils at 96 hours -- fully ready

Lentils at 96 hours -- fully ready

What a leap from 72 hours to 96 hours. After three days the jar was loosely packed to a little over half. Then today at 4 days the jar was packed over full. These little guys really took off. You can see the green leaves and nice tender stems and roots.

Lentils (96 hours) Close-up

Lentils (96 hours) Close-up

The image above shows hulls mostly still attached to the lentil sprouts. They can be removed by pinching the seeds so that the hulls slide off. However, simple agitation in water is not enough to remove the hulls. For my taste, I just leave them on. I don’t find them a problem.

Lentil sprouts bagged (96 hours)

Lentil sprouts bagged (96 hours)

Bagged and ready to refrigerate until it’s time to munch. The cool of the refrigeration will slow the sprouting process but not stop it entirely. So it’s best to not produce more sprouts than can be eaten in a reasonable time.